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post #1 of 7 Old 05-20-2011, 01:09 PM Thread Starter
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lathe chuck?

i have a 4 jaw chuck with jaws that are adjusted individualy. how in the heck do you center something?
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post #2 of 7 Old 05-20-2011, 01:31 PM
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Never used one of those...my chucks are all scroll chucks that all auto center.

That bowl was perfect right up until that last cut...
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post #3 of 7 Old 05-20-2011, 02:07 PM
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I would use your tailstock to hold the work in place, using a center finder so that it's hopefully centered, and try and tighten the jaws from there. It won't be precise, but should get you in the ballpark.

Like sawdust says, a scrolling chuck that tightens and centers at the same time will save you a lot of headache and tomfoolery.

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post #4 of 7 Old 05-20-2011, 03:02 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the info. i also have a lathe with self centering jaws,your rite its alot easier. i bought this other lathe so when one is tied up. i know a guy that turns from trunks and limbs exc. and he says that with a oval shape piece you can still get pretty close to center adjusting it around with the individual adjusting jaws. its a pain in the ____ to me so i will definatly install another chuck.

What is the better chuck 3 jaw or 4 jaw?
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post #5 of 7 Old 05-20-2011, 03:24 PM
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4 jaw independant chucks are used mostly for metal working. They are not very good for holding wood. You can get close to right by loosening the jaws until they are flush with the outer edge of the body. then turn each jaw in an equal number of turns until it gets close to the work. This will get you pretty darn close.
then move the tool rest up until it almost touches the piece. rotate the work and look to see where the high or low side is. Loosen one jaw and tighten the opposite one to bring it into alignment. This can be quite painstaking. machinists us a dial indicator gauge to get things within a thousandths or so.
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post #6 of 7 Old 05-20-2011, 05:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by john lucas View Post
4 jaw independant chucks are used mostly for metal working. They are not very good for holding wood. You can get close to right by loosening the jaws until they are flush with the outer edge of the body. then turn each jaw in an equal number of turns until it gets close to the work. This will get you pretty darn close.
then move the tool rest up until it almost touches the piece. rotate the work and look to see where the high or low side is. Loosen one jaw and tighten the opposite one to bring it into alignment. This can be quite painstaking. machinists us a dial indicator gauge to get things within a thousandths or so.
What John said...I've used them for boring off center holes, and such. Actually it could be used for pendants and the like...now ya owe me 2 cents

Mick

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post #7 of 7 Old 05-21-2011, 06:59 AM
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A 3 jaw is great for repeating workpieces of similar outside dimensions, a four jaw is more versatile for woodworking because trees are seldom round. Just take your time and set up your 4 jaw, once you get the hang of it, you will most likely use it more than the 3 jaw.

I worked in 2 shops where you were expected to do all set ups with a four jaw only. They frowned big time on using a 3 jaw. Day to day, you would get several set ups, that couldn't use a 3; and make a profit.

Don't be intimidated by the 4 jaw, it is so much more versatile than the 3.

Harrison, at your service!
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